8 Things to do in Sapa, Vietnam
Located in the northwest of Vietnam, Sapa attracts tourists with its majestic mountain views and unique experiences, including exploring the lives of ethnic minorities.
Below is the list of the 8 Best things to do in Sapa that you cannot miss. Also included is how to get there, where to stay and insider tips to make the best of your trip to Sapa.
1. Muong Hoa Valley
Famous for its untouched natural landscape and ethnic tribes, Muong Hoa Valley is an exciting Sapa attraction that definitely deserves a visit.The color of the valley changes throughout the year. From April to the end of May, the valley is lush green, then the tone gradually changes to a bright yellow towards the harvest time in September. It’s great to visit in most months, except during the rainy season from July to August.
Ancient Stone Area
You shouldn’t miss exploring the ancient stone area when visiting Muong Hoa. The area is recognized as a national heritage with the relics of ancient Vietnamese people.There are approximately 200 stones of different sizes scattered around the valley, each carved with mysterious motifs. No-one can explain their origin or meaning.
2. Explore Lao Chai and Ta Van Villages
Similar to Cat Cat village, the villages of Lao Chai and Ta Van are inhabited by ethnic tribes. The area is located in the base of the valley, with the majestic ranges of Hoang Lien Son on each side.The terraced fields in Lao Chai – Ta Van have been around for hundreds of years and are maintained by the diligent hands of the local farmers. An area hundreds of hectares wide, the paddy fields with their curving lines are an impressive sight.
3. Ride along O Quy Ho Pass
O Quy Ho Pass is known as one of the most beautiful locations in Northern Vietnam. Riding along this pass, you will be immersed in the majestic mountain scenery. Once at the highest point, you’ll be able to touch the clouds. The locals call this place Heaven’s Gate.
4. Visit Love Waterfalls
Located on the way to the peak of O Quy Ho Pass, Love Waterfalls is one of the highlights of Sapa. With a height of nearly 100 meters, Love waterfalls really is an example of poetic scenery. The waterfall is located deep in the area of Hoang Lien National Park, and to reach it, you need to follow a 1.6km trail.There are also other little waterfalls on the way to O Quy Ho Peak.
5. Visit Cat Cat Village
Cat Cat Village is situated within a ten-minute drive of Sapa town. This village has a large population of H’Mong ethnic people. There are nearly 80 households located on a steep series of cobbled steps.The road that leads to Cat Cat village is gorgeous, and you can view terraced fields and ethnic houses while wandering along the winding road sections.
6. Try Out the Ethnic Clothing
One experience not to be missed when visiting Sapa is trying out the regional clothes. Being the home of different ethnic groups, Sapa’s clothing is extremely lively and diverse. Featuring unique decorative patterns, each outfit has a particular meaning.This is a part of Sapa culture that has existed for a long time and remains strong to this day.
7. Eat Local
Trying some of the grilled dishes in the delicious local eateries is an excellent idea in the cool evenings in Sapa. The sturgeon and salmon farmed here is transported to all areas of Vietnam. So a dish that is particularly special in Sapa is the sturgeon and salmon hotpot. The hotpot here is delicious with all fresh ingredients, such as mushroom, vegetables, tofu, sweet potatoes, and the local fish.The broth is cooked with freshly-picked herbs, producing a sweet and fragrant taste.
8. Visit Fansipan Mountain
A trip to Fansipan Mountain should definitely be on your list of things to do in Sapa. With a height of 3143 meters, Fansipan is known as the roof of Indochina. To conquer this mountain, you can sign up with a professional tour operator or take a tour with the locals. The most popular route will take you three days.The best time to hike is from September to March, especially at the end of February, when the mountain flowers begin to bloom. For those who don’t have enough time for hiking, there’s a much easier way! Now you can buy a train ticket to Fansipan peak.